Hollywood Killed Vaudeville, Now Your Smartphone Is Killing Hollywood

No actual bloodshed to these homicides. It’s money they’re shedding. The live stage shows of Jack Benny, George Burns and Al Jolson died in the 40s when Clark Gable, Lana Turner and Marlon Brando started to hit the silver screens. Hits like ‘Gone With The Wind,’ ‘The Godfather, and ‘The Exorcist ‘ were social events. Lines packing downtown movie houses with crowds dressed to the nines.

Now? What are you crazy…? Any night of any week dressed in any hard-scrabble outfit I want, my phone can instantly access movie scenes, cast interviews, with entire rundowns of box office results and reviews. The days when some days were special days, when people met people, when you might even take a cab or a limo somewhere are sorta gone. I mean, you’ve got it all in the palm of your hand, baby!

Sociologists and psychologists study this, but you can pretty much figure it out for yourself. When Mohamed-can’t-go-to-the-mountain your key pad can now bring any mountain to any Mohamed it’s told to. On the asset side: Immediate access to anything anywhere anytime. On the debit side: No longer as many reasons to reach out and interact with many other Others.

Call it cocooning or whatever you choose, our technology is changing who we are. It always has [the first wheel, printing press, radio]. It always will [the first 2-hour jet from NY to LA, the first commercial space shuttle, the first beam-me-up-Scottie].

Ready..? Set…? Oh wait a minute, the human race has never been really ready! We just hang on tight.

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